I really thought that last night was going to be my night. I was looking forward to it ALL day. I genuinely believed that besides Angela, the winner of Idol could be in this group of contestants. And I thought that was going to be one of 4 amazing talents that I was completely ready to see (Melinda, Janelle, Candice and Rachel – And whoever the fifth person decides to be. I’m personally undecided on who I want to be 5th. I know Rachel isn’t a shoe in. With Kree in, you can have Rachel AND Janelle go through. They’re just too similar). And all I could think tonight was one thing.
Make me pick my favorite! I thought it could be done. I thought with so much talent it would be hard for me to even pick who my favorite was. By the end of the episode it was more like…
I avoided social media because I started it late and didn’t want to be spoiled, and social media is NOTHING if not a spoiler of reality TV. And thank god I did, because had I seen who was kept and who went home before I started the episode, I would’ve been angry the entire night. Well, angry longer than I was, because I was angry after the episode was over. Let’s briefly talk about the performances and then I’ll get to my grievances. Who am I kidding, I’m sure I’m going to discuss my grievances while discussing performances. I can’t contain myself.
Melinda Ademi – Nobody’s Perfect
Starting off the night was Melinda. I thought she would be a great way to start the night. She is energetic, she has something that makes you want to watch her perform. Then I realized she was practically committing the worst crime known to Idol. Singing a song that one of the best singers of the group, sang the week before. I think she the producers might’ve done that as a calculated move. Maybe she was thinking, F-yeah, compare me to Angela, I’m gonna show you how much better I am than her. The reason it was a fatal blow? Well, I mean, compare the two –
Yeah, kind of a no brainer. Which was very upsetting. And more upsetting when later on in the evening, they were bringing up past performances and how well people did, and I believe, keeping them because of those performances. I get that and I understand that, but if that was the case, I still think you could’ve kept Melinda over Big Crazy Barb (Fact – I will be saying that line more than once tonight)
Candice Glover – Natural Woman
Candice just makes me want to make out with her. I’ll say I can’t wait to hear her sing something up beat like she sang on group night, but singing something that exposes all the nuances of her amazing voice, well there’s nothing wrong with that! Just don’t turn into Pia, Candice. Consider her time on Idol as a warning to try and think out of the box when it comes to song choice, just a little bit. The thing I loved most was Nicki drinking some serious Randy Haterade for not letting her through last season. I supposed JLo and Steven Tyler share that blame though. It’s just more fun to blame Randy and Randy alone. I mean, it was probably his fault.
Juliana Chahayed – Skyscraper
I had no idea who this girl was going into the episode, just that she was the youngest contestant (which immediately had me thinking that we’d be seeing her in a future season and not the remainder of this one). But she brought something that I think no other contestant brought to the show, of any of the top 20 girls – A great song choice and a unique arrangement that WORKED. She certainly sounded NOTHING like the original song. I agreed with Keith that she was definitely struggling with pitch, but the talent was there. And again, agreeing with Keith, I liked the purity and innocence in her voice. I wasn’t familiar with this chick at.all. BUT, I was pleasantly surprised. Unfortunately we won’t be seeing her, but I was prepared for that and her departure was ok with me. But girl was robbed.
Jett Hermano – Only Girl (in the World)
Ah yes, my tiny Asian friend. And she plays piano? Well we know I like that. Unfortunately for her, the performance reminded me of Shubha (if not slightly better) in that it just wasn’t great. I agreed with Nicki that I wish it would’ve climaxed and it kind of just ended. I was expecting a little more. No harm, no foul, in her departure.
Cristabel Clack – No One
Is it just me or does she seem entirely too young to have 3 children? She looks 18. Cristabel was hovering around my 5th wild card chick, mostly just because I like her attitude. But the song just did not sound good to me tonight. When I looked back to see who else had sung this song because I feel like it’s been done a million times, and I remembered another raspy singer that sang it, and re-listening, clearly did it WAY better than Miss Cristabel, and thy name is Elise Testone.
I agreed with Keith and Nicki, that the raspiness was not quite perfect tonight. I did not agree with Mariah when she started talking about past performances (again). If you’re going to judge one that way, judge all that way! (YES I’M LOOKING AT YOU BIG CRAZY BARB!)
Aubrey Cleland – Sweet Dreams
Ok lets just get the cat out of the bag on this one.
Ok now that that is out of the way, let’s talk about the talent portion, since this isn’t a Beauty Pageant (RANDY!) I wasn’t too familiar with her performances. That being said, I thought she was great. Her voice was dainty and powerful all at the same time. She was the one, of the people I didn’t know, that you just knew would go through. And it didn’t hurt that 2 judges said they’d hire her on the spot for a record deal (Always nice that a decent voice and a hot body, will pretty much guarantee you at least a 1 record deal). I was with Nicki though, overall. I mean, if you can’t do Bey like Bey can do Bey, then don’t do Bey. Did I say that enough for you? haha. I do still think she was worthy of going through, but I’m going to reserve any kind of “favorite” status until I hear her sing something more pop and less ballad.
Rachel Hale – Nothing But the Water
I knew Rachel was going to have an uphill road with her performance. But I felt like she really climbed that hill and showed how great she is. Her voice is just so right. So right. Except for that last “water”. That was a little rough. I didn’t know this song so I couldn’t really understand Mariah’s criticism but clearly she took the song in a different direction. I just don’t understand how when you have someone that is such a good presence on the stage and “makes a nation want to smile,” that you could even consider sending her home. Even though I practically called her departure before the show started, I was really hoping by the end of the episode, that they were just going to say that they had to keep 11 girls (or that they would admit they made a HUGE mistake by keeping Big Crazy Barb, and had to dump her for Rachel). Alas. Rachel, I either hope you come back, or I hope that you find a career outside of Idol because I do believe you belong on a stage somewhere!
Breanna Steer – Bust Your Windows
I felt like I was waiting for her voice to crack or something. Maybe it wasn’t powerful enough? The last note hit it thought. I’ll give her that. She made me want to see more of her, that’s for sure. Not my favorite but worthy of a Top 10 spot, I suppose. Also Keith, how can you have never heard that song? The songs he admits to not knowing amaze me. His comments make up for it though “I love that song, despite it’s violent nature.”
Janelle Arthur – Just a Kiss
I wanted to like Janelle. I did like her prior to this evening. And if you take the whole of her performances, she’s most certainly Top 5. And in that regard, I do think she deserved the Top 10 spot. But, also in that regard, god I thought that performance was atrocious, and my money was REALLY on Rachel getting the spot, once both had performed. I just thought that particular performance was possibly one of the worst of the evening. I blame it mostly on song choice. I see her more as a Reba/Trisha Yearwood voice, than a Lady Antebellum/Dixie Chicks voice. Michael Slezak brought up a good point talking about how her small stage performances far outweigh her big crowd performances, possibly spelling her demise earlier than one might expect. I just think she was more on a downward spiral where Rachel seemed to just get better over the last few weeks.
Zoanette “Big Crazy Barb” Johnson – Circle of Life
By far the most polarizing performance of the night. When I went back and looked at twitter to see what everyone thought, there were as many “that was terrible” as there were “Zoanette gives me LIFE”. My husband was watching Idol with me tonight for the first time this season (since he forced me to go to Kohl’s with him thereby forcing me to watch Idol late, on the DVR) and he couldn’t bevieve this chick was even on the show. I personally was wondering, was this Big Crazy Barb, or was this Rafiki (stage Rafiki, obvs)?
There’s a similarity, no? Anyway, lets get back to the polarization. I think I’m on the side of terrible. And like Tenna, I think the only reason they kept her is because she’ll give the “Vote for the Worst” people someone to root for, and she is a performer if nothing else. In fact, I think she’d do great as the part of Rafiki on Broadway, so maybe do that, instead? The main reason it pains me to see her go through is because I just cannot forgive the BUTCHERING of the National Anthem, from her audition. I don’t understand how she made it through that round, let alone to the Top 20. It baffles the mind and just leads me to this type of situation…
Overall I wouldn’t say I completely disagree with the Top 5 they chose, but I do believe they should’ve axed Big Crazy Barb and kept either Melinda or Rachel. I mean, Melinda would give you a performance akin to Zoanette (albeit slightly more toned down because it’s impossible to bring the crazy like Zoanette), and Rachel just did SO well tonight, I really thought she deserved an in. Here’s hoping one of them has a conviction record we aren’t aware of and Rachel can come in a few episodes in. A girl can dream.
So with all that said, I suppose we move onward and upward to see who the last 5 of the Top 20. Here’s hoping that the boys tomorrow perform as I want them to and the right 5 make it to the the Top 20. And in Idol fashion, I’ll settle for the right 3 (I’m looking at you Nate, Lazaro and Mathenee).